In The Closet, Still

I am in my early twenties, getting close to mid, and have been gay/bisexual my whole life. In my youth, early pubescent, I had a sort of relationship with an older boy and it was obvious that our attractions went beyond standard friendships. Though he was only a year or two older than myself I suppose he was a bit more mature, one day he said "lets face it, we are obviously gay", and for whatever reason this prospect terrified me. I moved to another state with my family shortly thereafter, but from that day forward I did everything in my power to hide my sexual orientation from both myself and my family. I was, and am, fairly attractive, and a tad bisexual, so I was always able to date girls and put on a good show, all the way up through college. But there was always this terror I felt, for example, when around friends I was always fearful that my attraction for them, which I denied to myself, would show. I was even terrified to acknowledge it myself, and when around gay men, who always seemed curious to get to know me, I always felt defensive. I suffered emotionally, due to suppression of desires and fear of not acting masculine enough, and I was terribly confused, as I recognize now, I was constantly on guard. However it never had a serious negative impact until recent years. Around age twenty I really began to suffer, and I continue to suffer, and it has only been over the last year or so that I have actually come to acknowledge that I am in fact attracted to men, always have been, and that this is OK. Yet I remain closeted, for reasons I cannot ascertain. I think I have just gotten so used to this I find it hard to change. Granted, I am finishing grad school this spring season and I have career considerations to keep in mind, but obviously my by being in a same sex relationship, or at least openly gay, would not require that I change my professional behavior. I also know for a fact that the only members of my family that matter would be supportive and just glad to see me happy, considering how depressed I have been, at least partly attributable to my state of self denial, or so I suspect. I recently went on a date arranged by a friend of mine (with a woman) and we pulled up to the cafe and I saw a happy gay couple get out of the car in front of us and go to a spot across the street, I watched longingly, they were so open, free, happy, and then I looked back at my date, needless to say it was a dull evening. Anyway, my point is that I just can't figure out why I am so afraid of coming out. I have never been in a gay relationship, and I have fought my being gay for so long that I cant imagine ever actually being free from this burden of suppression, I feel a certain aggression creep up in my behavior whenever I am around gay men, a sort of defense I have developed over the years to combat my own gayness. It is second nature and I feel bad about it. I am terribly conflicted around openly gay men, especially in social situations, because I feel like their presence draws out my natural self, yet I am somehow deprived from actualizing it. I dont have any gay friends whom I could speak with, but, I am going to be moving to a new city soon and I think I may just have to come out and finally just be myself. But for the time being I am in the closet, however it feels good to finally understand what exactly I am hiding from.
Kurtis333 Kurtis333
4 Responses Mar 28, 2011

I have known that I'm bisexual for about 9 years (I'm 24). I just recently (in the last 6 months) came out to my 2 best friends, they both accepted it, and accepted me, and it's an amazing feeling. This is also my first post EVER acknowledging it :)

I am glad to hear that things are getting better for you. You said you are finishing grad school. Congratulations, and Good Luck. You are about to begin a new chapter in life, I hope that you will feel free to open that closet door and allow people to get to know you for who you are.

Thanks cm98059, and you're right, its getting better already!

I am glad that you are starting to accept yourself for who you are. Masculine and Feminine are socially constructed constraints that keep many people from becoming who they really are. Once you are able to release the grip those ideologies have on your life, you will feel much better about yourself. I would actually encourage you to begin living your life and start searching for Gay friends and lovers. Once you begin to release those feelings, like the advertisements say, it only gets better. Accept yourself and love yourself, because until you love yourself, you will not be able to love someone else. Write me off list if you want to talk.